The Gambler’s Fallacy

Aristotle’s Sea Battle Paradox and Kierkegaard’s Response




The Gambler's Fallacy, The Sea Battle Paradox, Possibility, Necessity, Aristotle, Kierkegaard


I offer a conceptual study of Aristotle’s Sea Battle Paradox and propose that analysis of the paradox, as well as of its various solutions, can help to shed light on the psychology behind and the structure of the gambler’s fallacy. I compare Aristotle’s response to the paradox with Kierkegaard’s subsequent response in his chapter of Philosophical Fragments “Is the Past More Necessary than the Future?” I argue that proponents of each solution lead us to a different diagnosis of the gambler’s preoccupation with predetermination and future determination.

Author Biography

Nahum Brown, Chiang Mai University

Nahum Brown is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Chiang Mai University. He is the author of Hegel on Possibility: Dialectics, Contradiction, and Modality (Bloomsbury, 2020). He is the main editor of two volumes on the philosophy of religion: Transcendence, Immanence, and Intercultural Philosophy (Edited with William Franke, Palgrave Macmillan, 2016) and Contemporary Debates in Negative Theology and Philosophy (Edited with J. Aaron Simmons, Palgrave Macmillan, 2017). He has also published numerous articles and book chapters on Hegel, German idealism, and contemporary continental philosophy.




How to Cite

Brown, N. (2022). The Gambler’s Fallacy: Aristotle’s Sea Battle Paradox and Kierkegaard’s Response . Critical Gambling Studies, 3(2), 152–159.